Floribunda Roses are a much loved addition to the garden and provide that classic feel to the summer cottage garden.Developed during the last century, these bushy shrubs have the large, showy blossoms of the hybrid teas, but bloom more freely, setting clusters of three to fifteen blossoms rather than a single bloom on a stem. Floribundas are versatile; an individual shrub will fit easily into almost any sunny border planting. However, they are perhaps most striking in mass plantings. Floribunda roses offer a bouquet on every branch. The small flowers look like elegant hybrid tea blooms but appear in clusters instead of one flower per stem. Floribundas are a cross between polyantha species roses and hybrid teas, combining hardiness, free flowering, and showy, usually fragrant blooms.
Sizes of these hardy roses vary from compact and low-growing to a more open habit and heights of 5-6 feet, ideal for tall hedges. The foliage on floribunda roses tends to shrug off diseases, making for a low-maintenance plant that delivers maximum impact with its continuous bloom cycles. Most floribundas require very little spring pruning -- just removal of dead or damaged wood.
Floribunda (Latin for "many-flowering") is a modern group of garden roses that was developed by crossing hybrid teas with polyantha roses, the latter being derived from crosses between Rosa chinensis and Rosa multiflora (sometimes called R. polyantha). The idea was to create roses that bloomed with the polyantha profusion, but with hybrid tea floral beauty and colour range.
The first polyantha/hybrid tea cross, 'Rödhätte', was introduced by the Danish breeder Dines Poulsen in 1907. It possessed characteristics of both its parent classes, and was initially called a Hybrid Polyantha or Poulsen rose. Poulsen continued this line of work in subsequent years, introducing several Hybrid Polyanthas such as 'Else Poulsen' in 1924. Other breeders also began introducing similar varieties, and in 1930 the name "floribunda" was coined by Dr. J.N. Nicolas, a rose hybridizer for Jackson & Perkins in the US. This term has been used since then to describe cultivars which in their ancestry have crosses between hybrid teas and polyanthas.
Typical floribundas feature stiff shrubs, smaller and bushier than the average hybrid tea but less dense and sprawling than the average polyantha. The flowers are often smaller than hybrid teas but are carried in large sprays, giving a better floral effect in the garden. Floribundas are found in all hybrid tea colours and with the classic hybrid tea-shaped blossom, sometimes differing from hybrid teas only in their cluster-flowering habit. Today they are still used in large bedding schemes in public parks and similar spaces.
My Favorite Top Varieties
'Amber Queen' bears clusters of cupped double flowers in a medium yellow and possesses a strong spicy-sweet fragrance. The plant stays compact, growing to 2-1/2 feet tall and wide. Zones 6-9
'Angel Face' shows strong disease resistance, an improvement on lavender roses. The ruffled blooms have a strong citrusy scent. The plant grows 2-3 feet high. Zones 5-9
'Blueberry Hill' features unique pale lilac semidouble blooms that smother the plant's glossy dark green foliage early in the season and then continuously until fall. The flower fragrance is sweet apple. The rounded plants show great vigor and disease resistance. They grow 4-5 feet tall and wide. Zones 5-11
'Cinco de Mayo' is an award-winning selection honored for its nonstop flower production, spicy color blend, and disease resistance. The clustered blooms feature a smoky mix of russet and lavender with coral highlights. Their fragrance is like a tart apple. 'Cinco de Mayo' grows 3-4 feet tall. Zones 5-9'Hot Cocoa' rose
'Hot Cocoa' is another unique-color, award-winning variety. The blooms feature a smoldering color combination of cinnamon and pepper red, with a purple shimmer on the petals. It grows 4-5 feet tall. Zones 5-9
'French Lace' offers classic urn-shape ivory to apricot buds that open to large, full flowers of a warm ivory tone. The fragrance is delicate. Flowers open on an upright plant that grows 3 feet tall and is disease resistant. Zones 4-9
'Honey Perfume' features clustered apricot-yellow blooms on a disease-resistant plant. The fragrance mixes honey and spice. It grows 3-4 feet tall. Zones 5-9
'Iceberg' is one of the most popular landscaping roses. It sets continuous drifts of small, clustered double white flowers from late spring through fall. The blooms have a light, sweet fragrance. The plant grows 4-6 feet tall and wide. Zones 5-9
'Livin' Easy' bears big apricot blooms that deepen to orange in full flower. The fragrance is moderate and fruity, and the foliage is glossy. The weather-tolerant plant is resistant to fungal diseases and grows 4-5 feet tall. Zones 5-9
Rosemary Rose bears medium size red bloom that cover the bush from spring until frost. There is not a noticeable fragrance but the generous blooming more that compensates.The weather-tolerant plant is resistant to fungal diseases and grows 3-4 feet tall. Zones 5-9'Scentimental' rose
'Scentimental' is a contemporary rose with peppermint-stripe petals that hearken back to gallica species roses. The blooms have a strong old-rose fragrance. The hardy plants grow to 4 feet tall. Zones 5-9
'Sexy Rexy' offers perfectly shaped, large, clear-pink blooms that unfurl layer after layer of petals. The clustered bouquets almost smother the glossy foliage, especially in the season's first flower flush. They're scented with a light tea-rose perfume. This variety is known to be very disease resistant. It grows 3-1/2 feet tall. Zones 5-9